How to Become More Mindful in Your Life?
Mindfulness is not just about our minds but our whole beings. When we are all mind, things can get rigid. When we are all heart, things can get chaotic. Both lead to stress. Unless they work together, the heart will lead to empathy, the mind will guide us with focus and attention, thus we become harmonious human beings.
Modern mindfulness practices include a focus on meditation, relaxation, attention, as well as on observing passing thoughts.
When you start to practice mindfulness, you may notice that each moment brings an opportunity for mindful presence.
What are the benefits of mindfulness?
The cultivation of mindfulness has roots in Buddhism, but most religions include some type of prayer or meditation technique that helps shift your thoughts away from your usual preoccupations toward an appreciation of the moment and a larger perspective on life.
Mindfulness improves well-being. When you increase your capacity for mindfulness, it supports many attitudes that contribute to a satisfied life. Being mindful makes it easier to savor the pleasures in life as they occur, helps you become fully engaged in activities, as well as creates a greater capacity to deal with adverse events. By focusing on the here and now, many people who practice mindfulness find that they are less likely to get caught up in worries about the future or regrets over the past, are less dealing with concerns about success and self-esteem, and are better able to form deep connections with others.
Mindfulness improves physical health. If greater well-being isn’t enough of an incentive, scientists have discovered that mindfulness techniques help improve physical health in various ways. Mindfulness can: help relieve stress, treat heart disease, lower blood pressure, reduce chronic pain, improve sleep, and alleviate gastrointestinal difficulties.
Mindfulness improves mental health. In recent years, psychotherapists have turned to mindfulness meditation as an important element in the treatment of a number of problems, including: depression, substance abuse, eating disorders, couples’ conflicts, anxiety disorders, and obsessive-compulsive disorder.
Simple Ways to Practice Mindfulness
Take Time Every Day for Yourself
Choose one activity that you would like to do mindfully. It can be anything. Just like you could take a walk or close your eyes and lay down to practice staying in the moment. Or you can brush your teeth with your non-dominant hand.
Stay in the Moment
Engage in that activity with all your attention. Put words to the experience. Describe it using your five senses: What do you see, feel, hear, smell, taste?
Pause Your Judgmental Thoughts
It is a natural human tendency to judge every situation. You can’t stop your mind from having judgmental thoughts, but you can let them glide by without feeding into them.
Your mind will wander; be patient and kind to it. Gently remind yourself that you are managing on staying in the present and not thinking about what you will make for supper.
When you practice mindfulness you can focus on your breath. Throughout the practice, concentrate on the experience of breathing by using your 5 senses, and if you notice your mind wandering, gently bring it back to your breathing.
Need some help?
To learn more about mindfulness and how you can incorporate it in your daily life, you can reach out to Dr. Carla Kesrouani directly to book your free consultation with her.